Tuesday 15.30-16.30

The IATI data standard is broken… let’s fix it!  Mike Smith, Wateraid; Sam Moody, Christian Aid; Sarah Johns, Bond

Many organisations receiving UK or Netherlands government funding are already publishing IATI open data on their projects, including project finance and results data … but did you know our Southern partner organisations will also need to publish their project data in this format? And that donors will use this data to help them make decisions? This one-hour practical workshop will show you how IATI data gets used and discuss the challenges our partners face in publishing reliable, meaningful IATI data. We think there’s parallels with supporting partners to produce and use M&E data. Join us to test out some ideas on how to engage partners and fix the IATI data standard to make it easier and more relevant for us all. (Salisbury Room)

Session Details:


Session Leads:

Sarah Johns is Transparency Adviser at Bond, the international network of development organisations, based in the UK. Sarah is also a Governing Board member of the International Aid Transparency Initiative. Since 2013, she has worked with funders and development organisations in the UK, Europe and Africa on sharing information on their projects using the IATI open data standard. Prior to Bond, she worked with Plan International for six years on programme communications and data. Her academic background/interest is the right of access to information, and how data and ICTs can enable this (or not!). More about Sarah here.

Sam Moody is Data and Transparency Advisor at Christian Aid and is based in London. In his position, he assesses the way that the organisation gathers, manages, analyses and presents information, looking for opportunities to improve impact. This includes work on digital MERL, internal decision-making processes and increased accountability through meaningful access to data. His primary interest in this work is in the extent to which digital technology can democratise the process of learning from data, shifting power dynamics by removing the need to rely on small numbers of people to interpret data for you. Before joining Christian Aid, he managed a community project in Gambella, Ethiopia and then lived on the Thailand-Myanmar border building the internal capacity of a local human rights organisation. More about Sam here.

Mike Smith is a Systems Architect at WaterAid. Part of his work includes leading on ICT4D and IATI.  He is a firm believer in open data and the role that NGOs should play in advocating for interoperable systems.  To this end he launched mobile data collection at WaterAid, originally to enable longitudinal monitoring to build a clearer picture of why waterpoints fail, now used widely across a broad range of initiatives.  He continues to work with technology providers to highlight the need to share data between systems so that we may collectively re-use information for more informed decision making.  He also led a number of organisations to release the development sectors first organisational reference model and is currently leading efforts to reform the IATI results standard so that it is fit-for-purpose.  He draws from his past in robotics research where he facilitated the robotics open-data revolution thereby releasing over £50m of previously inaccessible data to the global research community.  More about Mike here.